International Herald-Tribune: FoRKpaper of choice?

Rohit Khare (
Sun, 10 Aug 1997 00:43:12 -0400

It does do a pretty good job of getting the 3% out of the American press...

[Found in my further Cold War readings tonight within a larger talk on
American Neo-Isolationism: ]

This has not been true for most of the American press, or those who control
it, and certainly not for American broadcasting=97both of which, forty or
even thirty years ago, practiced very high standards in covering world
affairs, even though the audience even then was a limited one. There was a
professional assumption that the press had a public obligation to serious
reportage and analysis even if this had no direct commercial return.
Obviously this is not the case today for most of the media. Washington
functions on what it is told by the New York Times, the Washington Post,
National Public Radio, which is heavily dependent on the BBC, and CNN.
That's about it. A few other papers consistently cover international news,
including the Los Angeles Times. But who reads the Los Angeles Times in

The newspaper USA Today is representative of what most of the American
press across the country publishes in foreign news. In today's [April 11,
1996] edition, for example, there is a front-page article on "chaos in
Liberia." Inside there is a feature story on two lovers in Bosnia killed by
snipers during the fighting who have been buried together. Otherwise only
seven inches total are devoted to foreign news items, in order: France and
China sign trade deal; Argentine prison riots; memorial for Scottish school
massacre victims; elections in South Korea; mudslides in Bolivia; refugees
expelled from Zaire; Kurdish guerrillas escape attack; and dolphins now
protected in Peru.=20

International news is provided mainly when the great presidential circus
junkets abroad and then is mainly written by the Washington press corps
accompanying the president, whose concern with the foreign scene is with
how it plays for Washington politics.=20

The International Herald Tribune unquestionably now carries more, and more
comprehensive, international news than the entire quality press in the
United States. It publishes what the New York Times, the Washington Post,
the Los Angeles Times, and the press agencies all collect, plus material
from its own stringers and staff. In addition, its editorial pages have
become the place in which a genuine global public debate is conducted. For
these reasons the paper is read in every editorial room and foreign office
in the world outside the United States, and is a paper everyone in the
international political and business elite feels it necessary to see. Yet
despite its enormous influence worldwide, the paper is scarcely read in the
United States and has virtually no influence in Washington.=20

Rohit Khare /// MCI Internet Architecture (BOS) ///
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